Jessica M. Karmasek Apr. 4, 2013, 3:02pm

CONCORD, N.H. (Legal Newsline) -- Gov. Maggie Hassan has nominated former state Senate Majority Leader Joseph Foster to serve as the state's next top lawyer.

In a news release Monday, Hassan called Foster a "respected attorney."

A Democrat from Nashua, Foster has served as the chair of the management committee for one of New Hampshire's largest law firms, McLane Law Firm, where he currently chairs the bankruptcy practice.

In addition, he served as senator for the state's 13th District from 2002-08, rising to majority leader in 2007.

He also chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee from 2004-08.

"The role of attorney general in protecting and ensuring justice for the people of New Hampshire is one of the highest responsibilities in our state," Hassan said in a statement. "I am confident that Joe's judgment and experience make him the ideal candidate to serve as New Hampshire's chief legal and law enforcement officer."

She continued, "Throughout his career as an attorney and public servant, Joe Foster has stood up and defended the cause of justice at every opportunity. As Senate Judiciary chair, he brought people together to pass tough laws to protect our children from predators and to improve our justice system. His extensive legal experience will be invaluable in addressing the complex civil litigation facing the state, and in our ongoing efforts to improve protections for consumers."

Foster said in a statement he was "profoundly honored" to be nominated.

"If I am confirmed, I will work hard everyday to protect public safety and ensure justice for all of our citizens," he said.

Prior to serving as a state senator, Foster also served in the state House of Representatives from 1995-98.

He received his law degree from George Washington University in 1984 and his undergraduate degree from Tufts University in 1981.

Foster's nomination is subject to confirmation by the state's Executive Council.

At a meeting of the council Wednesday, Hassan formally nominated Foster.

New Hampshire is one of five states in which the attorney general is appointed by the governor. The other states include Alaska, Hawaii, New Jersey and Wyoming.

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